The Union Cabinet today approved a proposal from the Ministry of Human Resource Development to amend the National Council for Teacher Education Act, 1993 to clarify its applicability to matters relating to norms for minimum qualification for appointment of school teachers and clarify its applicability to schools and school teachers.
The National Council for Teacher Education Act, 1993 came into force on 1st July 1995 with an objective to achieve planned and coordinated development of teacher education system in the country and ensure proper maintenance of norms & standards in the above system.
The Act mandates the NCTE to lay down guidelines on minimum qualifications for a school teacher with a view to ensure uniform quality of teaching in the schools. The NCTE has framed regulations to discharge this function which are binding on all States in the matter of appointment of teachers.
Recently it came to the notice of this Department that Supreme Court in the case of Basic Education Board, U.P. Vs. Upender Rai & others, held that NCTE Act does not deal with educational institutions like primary schools, etc and thus in the matter of laying minimum qualification for appointment as teachers, the NCTE Regulations will not be applicable, and the State Legislation/Rule on the subject will prevail.
In the above judgement a Central Law was interpreted by the Supreme Court, but neither the NCTE nor the Union of India was impleaded in the case. A review Petition filed by NCTE in the Supreme Court was also not admitted. Therefore, a decision has been taken to amend the NCTE Act in order to clarify that the Act applies to schools, teachers and the NCTE is empowered to lay down the minimum qualifications for a person to be eligible as a teacher in schools.
The National Council for Teacher Education (Amendment) Bill 2009 will be moved in Parliament for consideration.